theHunter: Call of the Wild Review

theHunter: Call of the Wild Review

Hunting: a pastime once needed for survival, now more of a hobby.

It’s getting to be a tad controversial these days with many arguing against hunters posing with their “trophy” kills. Viral arguments on Twitter and Talk shows highlight the issue but it’s likely to continue. Since it involves guns it should come as no surprise that a game has been made for it.

Despite this, theHunter: Call of the Wild is a very niche game. It’s slow pace and peaceful surroundings will, undoubtedly, put a lot of players off. Those who prefer action and thrills should look elsewhere. This is a game that requires patience and planning.

Visually stunning

theHunter: Call of the Wild is a remarkably pretty game. The trees and bushes are surprisingly well animated, even going as far as showing which direction the wind blows in the grass. Every reserve looks equally impressive with dynamic weather and native animals. It doesn’t matter whether you’re hiking through the Pacific North West wilderness or a forest in Europe, it’s going to be a beautiful trek.

Tools of the Trade

While you’re hunting, you have various tools at your disposal. Binoculars to attempt to track your prey, callers to imitate animals to lure your prey into range, and eventually sprays to mask your scent. It’s an impressive array of tools on offer, unfortunately you’ll have to level up to get access to them.

Items bought in the Outpost cache are locked through level progression. It isn’t exactly a new thing in games, but it does make for a steep learning curve in this instance. It requires more patience and skill for beginners than for more seasoned players which seems the wrong way around.

This is even more of a hindrance when animals have incredibly realistic and sensitive hearing. Tracking animals efficiently is a slow and methodical process. Take your time, keep very quiet and try to stay downwind if your prey. If you’re lucky, or skillful, you may get yourself the kill.

National Parks

theHunter: Call of the Wild is split into two huge territories in which to hunt, with more being released via DLC. Navigating is relatively simple and the bigger open spaces can be quickly covered on a quad bike, though this will scare away any nearby animals.

Lookout points act like viewpoints giving a wide field of view on the surroundings and unlocking some intel on the surrounding area. Hideouts require funds to build, limiting their effectiveness, but a well placed hunter with the right lures can make good use of them. Hunter stats and perks are carried over thankfully, allowing for more efficient hunting as you progress or change areas.

Objective Gameplay

Assignments range from relatively simple such as taking a photograph of a deer, to the ultra-precise. It’s not enough to find a black bear and shoot it from beyond 180m away; you must also kill it within a very small area or a specific time of day. You do have narrators who guide you through their quest lines, but they rarely deviate into anything that could be construed as a story.

Better with friends

theHunter is another game that benefits from co-operative multiplayer. Having friends journey with you through the parks and just having other people to talk to instantly makes the experience more enjoyable and less tedious. Being able to track the same prey from multiple angles and shoot it when it’s time alleviates some of the frustration you might experience when hunting solo. You can have a party of up to eight players online, which seems to run well.l from everything I’ve seen although I’ve not personally been able to convince one other, let alone eight, to join in with me.

What’s Good:

  • Visually quite stunning.
  • A decent simulation of hunting.
  • Better with friends.

What’s Bad:

  • Huge amount of downtime.
  • Vital abilities locked behind level caps.
  • Mission conditions can get very precise.

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  • 6/10
    Overall - 6/10


Whilst theHunter: Call of the Wild performs perfectly well, it’s still going to be a game that only those with a lot of patience will enjoy. It’s very slow and isn’t very exciting when compared to faster paced mainstream titles. That’s not to say it’s not completely without merit as it’s absolutely gorgeous to look at and the peaceful strolling can make for a compelling and uplifting experience. Just note that this isn’t an experience for everyone.

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